Man r_apes seven of his daughter’s friends who are 12 year’s old

The George father who drugged and r_aped seven of his 12-year-old daughter’s friends during sleepovers attempted to apologise to the young victims and their families during sentencing arguments in the Thembalethu Regional Court on Monday.

“I am sorry for what I have done and I hope you can forgive me one day. I know I won’t be able to (forgive myself),” he said while wiping away tears and shaking while he spoke.

He only briefly looked over his shoulder at the families and then spoke while looking at his feet.

He added he was thankful that they had not taken their anger out on his own family – his former wife and daughter.

This apology was later criticised by prosecutor Brandon Smith, who said he believed it focused more on himself than the victims.

The 51-year-old man, who cannot be named to protect the identities of the children, entered into a plea bargain on January 25. While he originally stood accused of more than 3 000 charges – as part of the plea bargain he pleaded guilty to 67 of the charges, 37 of which related to the r_apes and the rest to the creation of pornography as he photographed the unconscious girls’ naked bodies.

It came to light that he had given them sleeping tablets which left them unconscious before he r_aped them. His victims were between the ages of 10 and 12, and the incidents took place during 2012 and 2014. He was arrested on November 27, 2014.

The man’s lawyer, Marius van Huyssteen, highlighted various issues he believed were mitigating circumstances – including that he suffers from depression, has been estranged from his wife for more than a decade which led to a recent divorce, that he has been behind bars for 15 months already, that he had no related previous convictions, and there had been no physical injuries to the girls.

Smith, however, said that the court should have a closer look at the person sitting in the dock before sentencing. “This is not your run-of-the-mill uneducated man. He has a BA degree with main subjects of psychology and communication. This is a person who used these tools at his disposal to groom these girls, to create peace of mind among the girls and their parents.”

He also mentioned that according to the report compiled following a psychological evaluation of the man, he was classified as a serial rapist, that he showed signs of being a paedophile and there was significant risk he would re-offend.

Smith said the incidents took place over more than a year, which gave the man ample time to stop and come forward.

“I believe the fact that he medicated the girls had nothing to do with sparing them the trauma, but was done out of self-interest so that he would not be caught.”

He also addressed the claim by Van Huyssteen that no physical injuries were recorded. He said there were several pieces of evidence that showed how the incidents affected victims.

“Some of the girls became moody, some started eating more than usual and there were infections. While they were unconscious, their bodies knew something was wrong.”

Smith asked that the man received a separate sentence for each of the r_apes and if the court wanted to show mercy to hand down one sentence for the charges relating to the pornography.

Magistrate Eugenia Jacobs postponed the matter to March 14 for sentencing.

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